Molinism: The Contemporary Debate

ISBN : 9780199590629

Kenneth J. Perszyk
336 ページ
149 x 224 mm

Molinism, named after the sixteenth-century Spanish Jesuit Luis de Molina, re-emerged in the 1970s after it was unwittingly assumed in versions of Alvin Plantinga's Free Will Defence against the Logical Argument from Evil. The Molinist notion of middle knowledge-and especially its main objects, so-called counterfactuals of (creaturely) freedom-have been the subject of vigorous debate in analytical philosophy of religion ever since. Is middle knowledge logically coherent? Is it a benefit or a liability overall for a satisfying account of divine providence? The essays in this collection examine the status, defensibility, and application of Molinism. Friends and foes of Molinism are well represented, and there are some lively exchanges between them. The collection provides a snap-shot of the current state of the Molinism Wars, along with some discussion of where we've been and where we might go in the future. More battles surely lie ahead; the essays and ideas in this collection are likely to have a major impact on future directions. The essays are specially written by a line-up of established and respected philosophers of religion, metaphysicians, and logicians. There is a substantive Introduction and an extensive Bibliography to assist both students and professionals.


1. The (Non-)Existence of Molinist Counterfactuals
2. Whence and Whither the Molinist Debate: A Reply to Hasker
3. Truth and Molinism
4. Trenton Merricks on Some Anti-Molinist Arguments
5. Pro Haskeris Contradictione
6. Replies to Hasker and Zimmerman
7. Molinist Conditionals
8. Tilting at Molinism
9. A Precis of 'Yet Another Anti-Molinist Argument'
10. Yet Another Failed Anti-Molinist Argument
11. An Anti-Molinist Replies
12. Molinism and Incarnation
13. Putting Molinism In Its Place
14. Molinism and the Thin Red Line
15. The Free Will Defense
16. Theological Determinism and Divine Providence
17. An Open Theist Theodicy of Natural Evil
Bibliography: Recent Work on Molinism


Ken Perszyk is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy and Head of the School of History, Philosophy, Political Science and International Relations at Victoria University of Wellington in New Zealand. His primary research interests are in philosophy of religion and metaphysics. He has published articles on a range of areas, including Molinism, the Argument from Evil, the metaphysics of modality, the history of early analytical philosophy and Wittgenstein. He is the author of Nonexistent Objects: Meinong and Contemporary Philosophy (1993).